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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

Rapid improvement of nitric oxide bioavailability after lipid-lowering therapy with cerivastatin within two weeks.

OBJECTIVES: We investigated whether improvement of endothelial dysfunction in hypercholesterolemia can be achieved with short-term lipid-lowering therapy. BACKGROUND: Impaired endothelium-dependent vasodilation plays a pivotal role in the pathogenesis of atherosclerosis and acute coronary syndromes. METHODS: In a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial, we studied 37 patients (52 +/- 11 yrs) with low density lipoprotein cholesterol > or = 160 mg/dl (196 +/- 44 mg/dl) randomly assigned to either cerivastatin (0.4 mg/d) or placebo. Endothelium-dependent vasodilation of the forearm vasculature was measured by plethysmography and intra-arterial infusion of acetylcholine (ACh 12, 48 microg/min) and endothelium-independent vasodilation by intra-arterial infusion of nitroprusside (3.2, 12.8 microg/min). RESULTS: Low density lipoprotein cholesterol decreased after two weeks of treatment (cerivastatin -33 +/- 4% vs. placebo + 2 +/- 4%, x +/- SEM, p < 0.001). Endothelium-dependent vasodilation improved after two weeks of therapy with cerivastatin compared with baseline (ACh 12 microg/min: + 22.3 +/- 5.2 vs. + 11.2 +/- 1.9 ml/min/100 ml, p < 0.01; ACh 48 microg/min: +31.2 +/- 6.3 vs. +19.1 +/- 3.1 ml/min/100 ml, p < 0.05). In contrast, changes in forearm blood flow to ACh were similar before and after therapy in the placebo group (ACh 12 microg/min: + 12.9 +/- 3.6 vs. + 9.0 +/- 1.9 ml/min/100 ml, NS; ACh 48 microg/min: +20.7 +/- 3.7 vs. 19.4 +/- 2.9 ml/min/100 ml, NS). Endothelium-dependent vasodilation improved in comparison with placebo (ACh 48 microg/min: +203 +/- 85% [cerivastatin] vs. -26 +/- 71% [placebo], p < 0.05). This improvement in endothelium-dependent vasodilation was no longer observed when the nitric oxide-synthase inhibitor N(G)-monomethyl-L-arginine was coinfused (ACh 48 microg/min + N(G)-monomethyl-L-arginine 4 micromol/min -48 +/- 85% [cerivastatin]). CONCLUSIONS: Short-term lipid-lowering therapy with cerivastatin can improve endothelial function and NO bioavailability after two weeks in patients with hypercholesterolemia.[1]


  1. Rapid improvement of nitric oxide bioavailability after lipid-lowering therapy with cerivastatin within two weeks. John, S., Delles, C., Jacobi, J., Schlaich, M.P., Schneider, M., Schmitz, G., Schmieder, R.E. J. Am. Coll. Cardiol. (2001) [Pubmed]
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